Our Summer Sadness

We had driven to Oshawa—4-plus hours one way—to pick up Andrew’s puppy, a chocolate lab whom he named Shadow.

Shadow liked to nap in our school room while the scholars’ pencils scratched. She liked to explore the yard and when she got older, was exhilarated at the sound of Andrew’s gunshot. Andrew took her hunting, Megan took her running, the younger ones loved to play fetch with her.

A year later, a friend of ours asked if we’d house his puppy at our place. Shiloh, a chubby golden lab, made a good companion for Shadow. The children felt Shiloh sounded so much like Shadow (too many beginning consonant digraphs, I guess) so they called the puppy Little Bops, because he bopped his head up and down when he walked.

This summer they became two mischievous, naughty dogs who teamed up together to make an escape plan. Little Bops, who wasn’t so little anymore, unlatched the kennel gate, bit the lock on the cage latch, and with Shadow’s assistance, dug a tunnel under the kennel walls to freedom.

An electric collar and fence kept them in safe bounds until the day the hydro went out for most of the day, and unbeknownst to us, the electric collar shorted and burnt out.

The dogs escaped soon afterwards with unfortunate results: they were hit by a car. Shadow was killed and Little Bops’ hip was shattered.

I did my best to comfort the girls who mourned with blankets over their heads when they heard the news first thing in the morning. Andrew bravely buried his smart, faithful dog.

Little Bops’ owner decided to have the leg amputated, and so began a summer of determined recovery for a three-legged dog who really appreciated our care and attention.

Our Summer Blessings

In continuing to write about my summer, Thanksgiving weekend afforded a wonderful time to reflect on God’s gifts and blessings to us this summer. This will be a post mostly in pictures and in nowise all-inclusive, but it is posted with a heart full of thanks to my Heavenly Father!

I’m thankful for each person with whom I spent my summer days.

For summer jobs…

For little ones and water.

I’m thankful for one pair of crocs worn right through–proof that one energetic little boy had a fun, active summer.

I’m thankful for summer camp-outs–though they had to wait till past their bedtime for darkness.

I’m so thankful for my dear daughter Megan who is also a sister in Christ!

We raised chickens again–hadn’t for several years—now I’m thankful for our own eggs.

Any animals or fowl that came by this summer were instantly befriended.

Well…except for a select few.

I’m thankful for summer sun and summer  colour.

I’m thankful for food to preserve for the winter months; for helpers and energy to do the work.

O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever. 1 Chronicles 16:34